Tourism strategy and engagement


Tourism has potential to attract and grow our primary sectors. It can enhance quality of life by creating a sense of place, which would support major employers in the area with talent attraction. It can also support the retail community and cultivate economic diversification.   

The strategy will help us understand what Strathcona County and the business community can do to support the community and economy through tourism. 

The next step

There will be a presentation to the Strathcona County Council Priorities Committee to review and discuss the Draft Tourism Strategy and Implementation Plan on July 14, 2020.

Feedback - video conference sessions

In the summer of 2019, Strathcona County began a process to develop a Tourism Strategy and Implementation Plan for the community. The primary goal of the strategy was to assess and address the need for enhanced tourism in the County. Over the past nine months, we have worked closely with the community to develop a Draft Tourism Strategy and Implementation Plan. Residents and businesses were consulted and gave input on the strategy through digital face-to-face session which took place on June 23 and 24, 2020. 

Draft tourism strategy and implementation plan

The following documents are the draft of the Strathcona County Tourism Strategy and Implementation Plan, as well as the presentation - for reference and discussion with video conference participants.

DRAFT Tourism Strategy and Implementation Plan (May 13, 2020) (17.2 MB)

Tourism Strategy Presentation (3.2 MB)

What we heard report

Stakeholders, residents, council members, and Strathcona County staff have provided input through surveys and interviews to inform the strategy and provide input on tourism opportunities:

  • 281 residents completed a survey, 21 of which were completed in-person
  • 34 unique stakeholder groups who have an interest in tourism, chose to participate in the engagement process either through public engagement sessions or by survey:
    • Four hotels and 10 other local businesses
    • Nine local organizations
    • Two other municipalities and eight tourism organizations
  • Individual interviews with each member of Council
  • Eight Strathcona County departments participated in staff input sessions

What We Heard Report summary

The following describes 7 key themes that were synthesized from all the engagement inputs received from stakeholders to date:

  1. There is strong support for tourism development among many Stakeholder groups
  2. There is a lack of awareness of tourism among some segments of the population
  3. There is a need for a unifying vision
  4. There is need of organizing for tourism development
  5. There is a willingness to collaborate and partner
  6. There are a lack of tourism products and operators
  7. There are opportunities for product development
  8. There is a desire for enhanced tourism marketing

This is community owned 10-year tourism strategy. The report sums up what we heard from our residents, businesses stakeholders, shareholders and Council of Strathcona County. We thank all those who have contributed. The full report can be seen below.

Tourism What We Heard Report (7.8 MB)

Resident engagement 

Residents were invited to learn more and provide input at a pop-up event on November 14, 2019, and through an online survey.  

Business stakeholder engagement

Business stakeholders were also engaged throughout the study. Stakeholders were invited to learn more and provide input through two stakeholder cafes on November 14, 2019, and through an online survey.  

Frequently asked questions

More information:

Economic Development and Tourism
Phone: 780-464-8095

Temporary Address:
County Annex Building
160 Festival Way
Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada
T8A 5Z2

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Last updated: Friday, June 26, 2020
Page ID: 50638